Native Plants in the Coastal Garden:A Guide
by April Pettinger The following was written for Whitecap Books as a description of the book. " NATIVE PLANTS IN THE COASTAL GARDEN: A Guide for Gardeners in British Columbia and the Pacific Northwest is about the 'what?', 'why?' and 'how?' of native plant, or 'natural habitat' gardening. It provides an introduction to the whole concept of gardening with native plants, and so includes some philosophic and pragmatic rationale in the opening chapters. The book, however, does more than preach to the non-converted; for those who are already committed to the concept of native plant gardening NATIVE PLANTS IN THE COASTAL GARDEN supplies methodology and 'how-to' gardening instruction: hands on tips and techniques for incorporating native plants into the garden or developing a complete, 'purist' native garden. Throughout the book, emphasis is placed upon observing the code of ethics for gardening with native plants.

April Pettinger is a member of the Native Plant Study Group of Victoria Horticultural Society and a regular contributor, on the subject of native plant gardening, to Gardenry, the VHS newsletter."

Following is a sample of some of the reviews on the book.

"With chapter titles What, Why, and Where, Pettinger's first book answers many of the questions newcomers to native plant gardening have been asking." Judith Isabella. The Saanich News, May 1996

"Native plants in the Coastal Garden by April Pettinger of Victoria (Whitecap Books, $19.95) is aimed at dispelling the mystique that surrounds native plant gardening with detailed information on species from fawn lilies to Garry oaks." Times Colonist, Homesliving, Saturday, April 13, 1996

"Native Plants in the Coastal garden by April Pettinger, (introduction by Des Kennedy), $19.95. Great introduction to the why, where, when and how of native plants. Filled with facts, it should be as vital as gloves and a trowel." Andrew MacDonald's Pick off the Shelf. The Field Naturalist (Book Store)

The book was also reviewed by "Cottage Magazine" in their July/August 96 issue but was a little long for me to type in. The second to last paragraph is as follows

"All in all, even with the absence of colour photographs, this is a vital resource for anyone interested in native plants and the coastal garden."

Review by Donna Dawson

What is native plant gardening? April goes through with great detail the reasons for gardening with native plants. She then takes us through the basics - the things we need to know in order to create a garden that respects the natural environment, from ethical guidelines, propagation and use of water to landscape styles and site plans - to elements of a native plant garden.

There is a wonderful chapter on identifying plant habitats and chapters on creating year round wildlife gardens through the seasons, including butterflies and birds.

April ends the book with a very appropriate chapter on how the aboriginal peoples had a close relationship with the land and used it to sustain life and keep them healthy. She describes some of those plants and their uses. What we can do today to preserve the past...

The what, why, how, where, when and who are all here....and if preserving the natural environment with the use of native plants is where you want to be...then read this book and you are halfway there.

April also includes a glossary of terms and a comprehensive regional resource guide to help you.

The contact at Whitecap Books is: Robert McCullough,
351 Lynne Avenue, North Vancouver, BC, V7J 2C4.
Telephone: 604-980-9852
Submitted by:
Barry Pettinger

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